Monday, February 06, 2006

The front lines of the special ed wars

I think this exchange from an article about parents in New Hampshire of a child in special education is going on in a lot of places:

"Sometimes public discussions about special education become accusatory, as they did last year at Hanover's annual district meeting, when someone suggested that parents may be taking advantage of the system. There are sometimes whispers that children receive services when they don't really need them, says McMorris, principal of Pomfet school.

It's a suggestion that Murphy, founder of ARCH and mother of two children with autism disorders, finds absurd.

“No parent wants to have a child with an IEP (individualized education plan). It's just too much work and it's still stigmatizing,” she said. “The stress and burden on the family is unbelievable.”
Murphy said she is sympathetic to people's worries about climbing tax rates, as she, too, is a taxpayer, but until a better funding mechanism is found, she says, she doesn't see an alternative.
“It's an unfunded mandate, but it's the law,” she said."

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